Time not ripe for energy tax
Minister of Finance Chang Sheng-ford (張盛和) said yesterday that now is not the right time to push for passage of an energy tax, given that it will be difficult for the economy to reach a 3 percent growth rate. In December last year, Chang said the ministry would push for passage of an energy tax if the nation’s economy grew more than 3.5 percent annually in the third quarter and fourth quarter of this year. Chang said yesterday that the public’s concerns about inflationary pressures, as well as sluggish economic growth in the first quarter, have changed his mind. Government agencies responsible for environmental protection, industrial development and energy also suggested holding off on the tax, he said.
Marginal growth forecast
The output of Taiwan’s electronic components and parts sector is likely to grow marginally this year despite global economic uncertainties, a government report released on Wednesday said. The report by the Industry and Technology Intelligence Services said that the output value of the sector is expected to reach NT$878.47 billion (US$29.28 billion) this year, up about 3.5 percent from NT$848.6 billion a year ago. Launches of new smartphones and tablets could maintain upward momentum, but global economic uncertainties and declining PC sales might offset the effect. “The sector is likely to post moderate growth this year amid these uncertainties,” it said.